The October 10 storm that battered the Duluth shoreline with powerful waves caused an estimated $18.4 million in damages according to an estimate from city officials. They state that this number could change as more detailed assessments are completed.

This damage estimate has prompted the City of Duluth to make a request for emergency disaster aid. The damage estimates from this storm meet the threshold for federal emergency aid, but city officials say they will still look to Governor Dayton for help in their aid request. The St. Louis County Board has been asked by city officials to make an emergency declaration to the state, which also is a part of the aid-seeking process.

The preliminary estimate for the $18.4 million in damages includes the following areas:

  • Lakewalk Trail from the canal to Leif Erikson Park and missing revetment along the shoreline
  • A section of the seawall by the MN Slip Bridge
  • The sidewalk behind the DECC
  • 12th Street beach access boardwalk
  • Brighton Beach
  • Pedestrian trail located behind the Ledges residential units
  • The Lake Superior & Mississippi Railroad rail line
  • Eroded shoreline behind the Lakewood Water Treatment Plant

This additional damage compounds previous damage from an October 2017 storm and April 2018 storm that caused $10 million in damages. The week of this storm, repairs to previous storm damage had just begun to a stretch of the Lakewalk near the Fitgers complex.

Crews continue to work on restoring public access to areas impacted by the storm. As was announced at the beginning of this week, there is still a plan to get a temporary path on the Lakewalk by sometime next week. Crews are also working on a temporary sidewalk behind the DECC and restoring vehicle access to Brighton Beach by sometime next week.

Also of note, the Lakewalk Trail tunnel by Lester River has been cleared and is open for trail users. Other areas such as the 12th St. beach access and the pedestrian trail by the Ledges residential units east of 21st Ave East remain closed until further notice.